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Category:
Eccentrics

The Englishman Who Posted Himself



So long as Alex has brought up this theme, I thought I would reference this great book, which I reviewed at the B&N REVIEW upon its release five years ago.
Posted By: Paul | Date: Sun Feb 15, 2015 | Comments (1)
Category: Eccentrics, Books, Europe, Postal Services

Can You Flick It? A Subbuteo Story



The thrilling, incomprehensible, unnerving history of tabletop soccer.

Home page of Subbuteo.
Posted By: Paul | Date: Mon Feb 09, 2015 | Comments (5)
Category: Eccentrics, Games, 1940's, Europe

The Man Whose Mind Exploded



Documentary about a fellow with no ability to lay down new memories. Plus other "issues."

Full story here.

Welbeck Abbey

image


A famous eccentric, the Fifth Duke of Portland spent a fortune over twenty-five years constructing fantastical additions to his estate, Welbeck Abbey, including fifteen miles of underground tunnels.

The Duke was very introverted - he did not want to meet people and never invited anyone to his home. His rooms had double letterboxes, one for ingoing and another for outgoing mail. His valet was the only person he permitted to see him in person in his quarters - he would not even let the doctor in, while his tenants and workmen were told never to acknowledge his presence (a workman who saluted him was reputedly dismissed on the spot) and they received all their instructions in writing.

His business with his solicitors, agents, and the occasional politician was handled by post. The Duke maintained an extensive correspondence with a wide-ranging network of family and friends, including Benjamin Disraeli and Lord Palmerston. He is not known to have kept company with any ladies, and his shyness and introverted personality increased over time.

His reclusive lifestyle led to rumours that the Duke was disfigured, mad, or prone to wild orgies, but contemporary witnesses and surviving photographs present him as a normal-looking man.

He ventured outside mainly by night, when he was preceded by a lady servant carrying a lantern 40 yards ahead of him. If he did walk out by day, the Duke wore two overcoats, an extremely tall hat, an extremely high collar, and carried a very large umbrella behind which he tried to hide if someone addressed him.

If the Duke had business in London, he would take his carriage to Worksop where he had it loaded onto a railway wagon. Upon his arrival at his London residence, Harcourt House in Cavendish Square, all the household staff were ordered to keep out of sight as he hurried into his study through the front hall.

He insisted on a chicken roasting at all hours of the day, and the servants brought him his food on heated trucks that ran on rails through the underground tunnels.



Wikipedia page.

Long essay here.
Posted By: Paul | Date: Tue Jan 27, 2015 | Comments (7)
Category: Architecture, Eccentrics, Europe, Nineteenth Century

Mechanic kept flower in his mouth

I know that some people have the habit of holding a pen or pencil in their mouth while working. But that seems quite normal compared to holding a flower in your mouth almost continuously for 63 years.
Source: Corsicana Daily Sun - Sep 29, 1960.

Posted By: Alex | Date: Sun Dec 14, 2014 | Comments (0)
Category: Eccentrics, 1960's

Wrong-Way Corrigan







Always a pleasure to revisit this famous incident and charming fellow, with some "new" vintage footage of him at a press conference.

Posted By: Paul | Date: Fri Dec 12, 2014 | Comments (3)
Category: Eccentrics, Air Travel and Airlines, 1930's

Car with Thatched Roof

Posted By: Paul | Date: Wed Dec 03, 2014 | Comments (4)
Category: Eccentrics, Hobbies and DIY, 1960's, Cars

Cassadaga Spiritualist Camp



The tour for squares.



The tour for hipsters.

Their home page.

Posted By: Paul | Date: Thu Oct 30, 2014 | Comments (3)
Category: Eccentrics, Regionalism, Religion, Superstition

Octagon Houses

image

For a brief time in the USA, eight-sided houses were a thing. Based on the crackpot theories of one fellow.

The example above can be found in my native Rhode Island. I used to marvel at it all the time when I was younger.

Read the history here.

Order a book here.


Posted By: Paul | Date: Mon Oct 20, 2014 | Comments (10)
Category: Buildings and Other Structures, Eccentrics, Nineteenth Century

Dion McGregor



Full explanation here. In short, recordings of a man unconsciously narrating his dreams.

Full album below.

Posted By: Paul | Date: Sun Oct 12, 2014 | Comments (3)
Category: Dreams and Nightmares, Eccentrics, 1960's
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All original content in posts is Copyright © 2008 by the author of the post, either Alex Boese ("Alex"), Paul Di Filippo ("Paul"), or Chuck Shepherd ("Chuck"). All rights reserved. The banner illustration at the top of this page is Copyright © 2008 by Rick Altergott.